Leadership Rule #3
Okay leaders, this is a big, big deal. Always put your team first. One of the best bosses I have ever had told me that as long as he was making sure his team was getting opportunities to grow and move up that his career would take care of itself. Humility and graciousness aside, this makes logical sense. At that time, Target recognized that a defining characteristic of a well-run store and a high-capacity leader was the extent to which people were being promoted out of the store.
And so Bill was right. The more his team moved up, the brighter his star.
Now compare this to Kevin. Over 15 years later and just hearing his name still aggravates me. My head has already started hurting and my teeth are clinched. There’s a lot of reasons for this. But there’s a moment – a memory – that epitomizes his failure as a leader (and why he went through team members). So, the big boss was coming into town to check things out. And the routine was that he would take the top two guys out to lunch. So after returning from lunch and sending the boss on his way Kevin turns to me and says “that was supposed to by my time. Why the hell did you come with us?” Never mind that I was invited. Never mind that was normal. But why not want to help a younger guy who works for you? Because he was more concerned about himself than his team.
That was about par for Kevin. You think his team worked hard for him? Nope. You think they went the extra mile? Nope. In fact, we did exactly what was required of us until our transfers were approved or we found better jobs.
So keep this in mind – put your team first. And you’re career will take care of itself.
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